27.5 vs 29, but with different suspension travel...(Tallboy vs 5010)- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    27.5 vs 29, but with different suspension travel...(Tallboy vs 5010)

    I've narrowed my next purchase down to the Santa Cruz Tallboy and 5010, but I am having some trouble deciding as I'm new to the whole wheel size thing (Though I did read a couple threads on it before posting this message). Price, geometries, weight, and components are identical.

    Couple questions I have:



    • 1. The 5010 and tallboy seem to be very similar on paper, however, the tallboy has 29" wheels with 130mm front/120mm rear travel and the 5010 has 27.5" wheels with 140mm front/130mm rear travel. Assuming everything else being equal, which would would do a better job of smoothing out the trail and absorbing unevenness? I know the 29er wheels technically do this, but when you add 10mm of suspension to the front and rear, does that change things?

      2.
      I keep hearing that the 5010 is more lively, poppy, playful, etc. by comparison to the Tallboy, i'm not sure if that is a positive for me. For an old guy who keeps his wheels firmly on the ground (no drops, jumps, wheelies, manuals, etc), doesn't race, and rides green and blue trails. Which bike is better suited to my needs? I'm 5'10 and 170lbs if that makes a difference.

  2. #2
    Coffee Drinker
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    Tallboy sounds like it fits your needs. 5010 is an awesome playbike.

  3. #3
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    I'm generally a fan of 29ers, and have a Giant Trance Pro. I've ridden a friend's TB (he's my size and weight, and was trying to get it dialed in up here in Utah) which is an XO1 CC build with the reserve 27 rims. I was really underwhelmed by the new TB.

    I came from a Yeti SB5, which when it came out was pretty similar to the 5010. While that may no longer be the case, my inclination would be to go in the direction of the 5010. But based on your profile, it looks like you come from a road biking background, and ride in SoCal, so there's just no way to know what you'd prefer. And many people really love the new TB.

    That's really just a long winded way of stating the obvious.
    If you have the opportunity, you should ride both.
    I'm sure either one would be great, really.

  4. #4
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    I stumbled upon this thread, with glowing reviews of the TB. In particular, Rev Bubba has ridden both, so it may be helpful to take a look.
    https://forums.mtbr.com/general-disc...l#post15092747

  5. #5
    SP Singletrack rocks
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    The reality is that either bike will basically do anything you would want to do, but the 29er well will smooth small bumps out better even with equal suspension due the bigger wheel have a better angle of attack.

    The 29er also has more BB drop which make is 'slightly" harder to manual, bunny hop, and transition between turns, while feeling more planted otherwise.

    The 27.5 will have less BB drop which will make it easier to manual, bunny hop, transition between turns and feel less planted. it will feel slow on successful small hits especially on flatter/uphill sections of trails.

    The actual wheel size affects the ride IMO less than the BB drop. Yes the 27.5 is lighter and there for in theory easier to accelerate or decelerate, but since 29ers and the lower BB drop tend to hold speed better though turns its kind of a moot point. The 29er carries speed so much easier that the perceived lack of being able to 'accelerate" is almost meaningless. Also the large heavier wheel tend to have more gyroscopic affect which means the bike tend to want to stay upright more than a 27.5 meaning in straights line long sweeping turn its physically harder to be knocked off line, but can feel harder in some tight turn, but it easy to learn how to work against the gyroscopic force.

    For reference I currently ride

    2014 Trance Sx 27.5 160/140 with an angle set to modernize it, was bought a size up because I knew where geometery was going and its reach is only 10mm shorter than my 2020 bikes.
    2020 Canfield N9 29er
    2020 Transition Sentinel 29er (very new)

    IMO the Trance is slightly quicker on DH that have tons of transitions but its much slower climbing. traversing, and feels less stable on chunky downhill. In fact sometime the N9 despite being a hardtail feels more stable over chunk than the Trance. I would love to try a modern 27.5 like a 5010 or Scout but I already spent so much money on bike this year it will be 3-5 years before I get a new bike. With that said I still feel that the 29ers downsides are WAY less than a 27.5 downsides.

  6. #6
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    The TB4 is way long/low/slack. Def not optimum for my riding. It's more of a short travel enduro rig, great for descending and less so for tech climbing and tight maneuverability. The TB3 I have is great.
    What, me worry?

  7. #7
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    I'd get the tallboy but the 5010 is a great bike too. There are a lot of youtube reviews on the tallboy and it seems very well loved across the board. Maybe check a few of them out.

  8. #8
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    Tallboy. It will rollover roots and rocks easier at climbing speeds.

  9. #9
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    Thanks guys, ordered a Tallboy.

  10. #10
    Class Clown
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    Enjoy! 29" wheel offer many benefits

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